It’s wedding season, and that means more bridal showers, couple showers, and yes—gift registries. A recent trend has emerged in the shower-sphere, which is having a display shower. This is the request for clear gift wrappings or unwrapped gifts. Here are some tips if you are considering a display shower or get invited to one.
What are Display Showers
As wedding traditions evolve, more brides are choosing to forego the sometimes awkward and timely opening of gifts. Co-ed showers are now cocktail parties, luaus, sporting events, and backyard barbeques. Couples sometimes decide not to open gifts at all. Reasons could include:
- Allows more time to enjoy the event and guests
- The venue could have a time limit or space
- Going green
- Being the center of attention makes the bride, groom, or both, nervous and uncomfortable
A display shower is a great idea in these scenerios. Plus, guests can still get a glimpse of the happy couple’s new goodies.
Consider Your Guests
The decision to not open gifts, is ultimately up to the couple. However, you may want to consider your audience and if the guest list leans toward more traditional rituals. Is the event family-only, a mix of friends, a younger generation, or co-ed? All these are factors should be weighed as you determine the timeline, theme, and activities.
Keep in mind that some guests may feel the act of opening gifts is a way to express gratitude. After all, they did purchase a gift, traveled to the venue, and made time to attend the shower.
How to Announce a Display Shower
For guests, receiving an invitation with wrapping instructions can be confusing. This happened to me when I was invited to my first display shower. The card asked for clear wrapping. The group of friends I was attending the shower with were just as perplexed. However, once we got to the shower, it all made sense.
A sentence or insert card with a brief explanation can clear this up and help set expectations. Here are some ideas on wording:
- Please wrap the gift for all to see, for more time to honor the bride-to-be.
- Please put gift wrapping aside, so there is more time with the bride.
- No need to wrap, bring your gift to be on display so the happy couple can enjoy the day.
- Simply state it’s a display shower and ask guests to kindly forgo wrapping.
Whichever way you decide to inform your guests, make sure to write a thank you note after the event.
Attending a Display Shower?
If you’re attending a display shower and are having trouble ‘wrapping’ your head around what to bring, here are some suggestions.
Follow suit with many party-goers and buy your gift online. Ship the toasters, blenders, and towels directly to the home of the honoree. It also saves you a bit of time. For the party, you can bring a card or bottle of bubbly, so you don’t arrive empty-handed.
If you chose to accept the display challenge, here are some tips:
- Pick a gift that has the item pictured on the box. Top it off with ribbon or bow for a final touch.
- Some stores gift wrap in branded boxes. In this case, it’s logical just to bring the boxed gift as-is, no wrapping required.
- A basket with gifts can be left exposed and easily displayed. Skip the cellophane and add tissue paper and ribbon.
Ultimately, remember that this is a celebration for the couple and their love. Gifts—wrapped or not—are an added bonus to be appreciated.